The cross sections of nuclear reactions relevant for astrophysics are crucial ingredients to understand the energy generation inside stars and the synthesis of the elements. In stars, nuclear reactions take place at energies well below the Coulomb barrier. As a result, their cross sections are often too small to be measured in laboratories on the Earth's surface, where the signal would be overwhelmed by the cosmic-ray induced background. An effective way to suppress the cosmic-ray induced background is to perform experiments in underground laboratories. LUNA is a unique facility located at Gran Sasso National Laboratories (Italy) and devoted to Nuclear Astrophysics. The extremely low background achieved at LUNA allows to measure nuclear cross sections directly at the energies of astrophysical interest. Over the years, many crucial reactions involved in stellar hydrogen burning as well as Big Bang Nucleosynthesis have been measured at LUNA. This paper provides a short overview on underground Nuclear Astrophysics and discusses the latest results and future perspectives of the LUNA experiment.

Nuclear Astrophysics deep underground and the LUNA experiment / R. Depalo. - In: JOURNAL OF PHYSICS. CONFERENCE SERIES. - ISSN 1742-6588. - 1308:(2019), pp. 012009-1. ((Intervento presentato al 42. convegno Symposium on Nuclear Physics tenutosi a Hacienda Cocoyoc nel 2019 [10.1088/1742-6596/1308/1/012009].

Nuclear Astrophysics deep underground and the LUNA experiment

R. Depalo
2019

Abstract

The cross sections of nuclear reactions relevant for astrophysics are crucial ingredients to understand the energy generation inside stars and the synthesis of the elements. In stars, nuclear reactions take place at energies well below the Coulomb barrier. As a result, their cross sections are often too small to be measured in laboratories on the Earth's surface, where the signal would be overwhelmed by the cosmic-ray induced background. An effective way to suppress the cosmic-ray induced background is to perform experiments in underground laboratories. LUNA is a unique facility located at Gran Sasso National Laboratories (Italy) and devoted to Nuclear Astrophysics. The extremely low background achieved at LUNA allows to measure nuclear cross sections directly at the energies of astrophysical interest. Over the years, many crucial reactions involved in stellar hydrogen burning as well as Big Bang Nucleosynthesis have been measured at LUNA. This paper provides a short overview on underground Nuclear Astrophysics and discusses the latest results and future perspectives of the LUNA experiment.
Settore FIS/04 - Fisica Nucleare e Subnucleare
Division de F�sica Nuclear de la SMF
Instituto de Ciencias Nucleares, UNAM
Instituto de Fisica, UNAM
Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones Nucleares
Article (author)
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2434/931201
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